9 Most Expensive Pens Ever Sold

| |

Pens in one form or another have been around since 3,000 BC when reeds were used by our ancient ancestors to dab inks onto the recently discovered papyrus, the ancient equivalent of paper. Since then, pens have remained a central aspect of academia, government, and just everyday living.

Though computers have replaced many of the historical needs for pens, they have not revoked their status as important features of everyday life.

Continue reading to learn about the pens that go beyond the everyday. These are the 9 most expensive pens ever sold.

9. Truman Fountain Pen

Price: $314,000
Country: United States
Designer: Bradley of Vermont
Truman Fountain Pen
photo source: Christie’s

While the Truman Fountain Pen comes with the signed letter that is arguably the star of its Christie’s auction, the pen should also be considered among the most expensive ever sold due to its historical value.

The pen that sold at the 2002 Christie’s auction entitled, “Forbes Collection of American Historical Documents,” was framed with a letter written by Harry S. Truman, then present of the United States, to David Niles.

The letter detailed the United States’ intent to recognize Israel as its own nation, making it a significant artifact in American history. Truman sent the pen to Niles later as a memento of their collaboration to grant Israel its de jure status. The pen and letter sold at its auction for $314,000 despite only being valued up to $12,000.

Did you know?

In government, “de jure” refers to practices that are recognized by law even if they describe something that doesn’t exist in the real world. In the case of Israel, de jure status referred to it being recognized by law, meaning recognized as having its own status as a nation.


8. Gothica

Price: $487,000
Country: Switzerland
Designer: Caran d’Ache
Gothica
photo source: Pinterest

The Gothica pen was made by Caran d’Arche, the luxury writing instrument manufacturer that was established over a century ago. This pen was made to emulate Gothic architecture, particularly its angled faces and its symbols, which include fleur-de-lis and other royal insignia.

This pen’s structure includes 900 diamonds, 72 emeralds, and 72 rubies. Since 1915, Caran d’Ache has been producing luxury pens, pencils, pastels, markers, paints, and more.

Their original name was “Fabrique Genevoise de Crayons Ecridor.” Even though the Gothica pen costs $487,000, it’s not the most expensive pen they have on this list.

Did you know?

The company was renamed to Caran d’Ache in 1924 after the French cartoonist. It then relocated to Thonex in the Canton of Geneva in 1974.


7. Mystery Masterpiece

Price: $730,000
Country: Germany/France
Designer: Montblanc/Van Cleef & Arpels
Mystery Masterpiece
photo source: Pinterest

The Mystery Masterpiece is a pen made in a collaboration between Montblanc, the luxury manufacturer in Hamburg, Germany, and Van Cleef & Arpels, the jewelry designers. The Mystery Masterpiece pen takes two years to manufacture and was first unveiled in 2007.

The pen has a body of white gold sculpted into a cigar shape, sparkling with 800 diamonds. The ribbon can be customized based on the buyer’s preference to be made from rubies, sapphires, or emeralds. The nib of this pen is solid 18K gold. The whole pen sells for $730,000.

Did you know?

Van Cleef & Arpels out of Paris was founded in 1896 by a diamond-cutter. Their luxury jewelry frequently features natural imagery such as animals and flowers. Their jewels have been worn by many famous beauty queens and superstars like Grace Kelly, Ava Gardner, Elizabeth Taylor, and Queen Nazli.


6. Heaven Gold

Price: $995,510
Country: Canada
Designer: Anita Tan
Heaven Gold
photo source: Bertram’s Inkwell

The jewelry designer Anita Tan created the Heaven Gold pen. Only eight examples were made, driving the price of this jewel-encrusted pen, practically a piece of jewelry in its own right, close to a million dollars. It contains 48 carats of diamonds, totaling 1,888 separate stones, 161 of which are colored gems.

The pen also proudly displays a singular gemstone, which is a 43-carat Tsavorite, a precious gem in the garnet group. The pen is made from pink gold and was crafted in 2010.

Did you know?

The Canadian jewelry designer Anita Mai Tan has created not only this jeweled pen but luxury necklaces, cellphone cases, and other high-end accessories. The pen features many references to the number 8, which plays into Chinese numerological symbols as the number for fortune. This may be why the pen contains 1,888 stones.


5. 1010 Diamond Edition

Price: $1,000,000
Country: Switzerland
Designer: Caran d’Ache
1010 Diamond Edition
photo source: CelebreMagazine

Caran d’Ache of Switzerland made the 1010 Diamonds Limited Edition Fountain Pen. The company was founded in Geneva in 1915 by Arnold Schweitzer, named after the famous French satirist and cartoonist, Emmanuel Poire, who took the aristocracy to task in his political drawings back in the 19th century. He wrote under the pen name, Caran d’Ache.

The pen that is the brand’s crown jewel creation was made as an homage to Swiss Haute Horlogerie, constructing from solid white 18K gold. The body of the pen is covered in over 850 glittering diamonds cut in three different luxury styles, including emerald, baguette, and brilliant cuts. Even the pen cap is designed to mimic the look of a watch’s gear.

The 1010 Diamond Edition pen sells for an even $1,000,000 (they could have at least made it $1,010,000).

Did you know?

Caran d’Ache, the cartoonist, is now known as the predecessor of all comic strip artists. His pen name, reduced to phonetics (“karandash”), means “pencil” in Russian.


4. Apollo 11 Pen

Price: $1,000,000-$2,000,000
Country: United States
Designer: Duro Marker
Apollo 11 Pen
photo source: Sotheby’s

Unlike the other pens on this list, this pen, known as “the pen that saved Apollo 11,” is not covered in jewels or crafted from luxury metals. It’s a completely normal pen, made by Duro Marker, and was just part of the stuff in the supplies on the Apollo 11 mission when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon.

When they were walking back to the capsule after collecting samples of rock and dust, Aldrin accidentally bumped the circuit breaker with his backpack, which is the circuit that activates the ship’s liftoff procedure. They used this pen to complete the circuit and were able to return from their historic mission. The pen was estimated to be worth $1 million to $2 million at a Sotheby’s auction but never sold.

Did you know?

The Apollo 11 spaceflight included a third astronaut, the pilot Michael Collins, who flew their command module, Colombia. The lander was the Eagle (hence, “the Eagle has landed”) and made its historic landing on Jul7 20, 1969 when the men (and this pen) made history.


3. Diamante

Price: $1,470,000
Country: Italy
Designer: Aurora
Diamante
photo source: Luxtionary

The Diamante by Aurora is one of the most expensive pens ever made and certainly one of the most sparkly. Its body is molded from pure platinum and cloaked in De Beers diamonds, 1,919 in total, weighing over 30 carats. Even the nib is made from solid gold.

The pen’s value can be increased by its many customization options, which include the potential for personalizing it with a signature, a portrait, a coat of arms, or even a business logo. The pen costs $1.47 million.

Did you know?

Aurora was founded in Turin in Italy in 1919. It’s named after the historic district in Turin, which has the biggest open market in Europe, the Borgo Dura quarter where the famed Sermig Institution is located, and the Valdocco quarter, the site of the Sanctuary of Our Lady Help of Christians.


2. Montblanc Boheme Royal

Price: $1,500,000
Country: Germany
Designer: Montblanc
Montblanc Boheme Royal
photo source: Celebre Magazine

The Boheme Royal is the flagship pen of the Montblanc pen company, an 18K white gold masterpiece encrusted with 1,430 diamonds. The pen can be customized in one of two color palettes: the white diamond pattern or the white and black alternating pattern.

The Montblanc logo alone is made from 19 diamonds and three rings made from white gold.

The German pen-maker made their crown jewel for $1.5 million, though they regularly sell other luxury pens for $10,000-$20,000.

Did you know?

The stylus pen with the retractable nib is the basis all modern pens. It was invented in 1884 by a professional insurer. Not long after, Montblanc was founded in 1906 as a luxury goods maker in Hamburg. They now make everything from pens to watches to travel items.


1. Fulgor Nocturnus

Price: $8,100,000
Country: Italy
Designer: Tibaldi
Fulgor Nocturnus
photo source: Pinterest

The most expensive pen is the Fulgor Nocturnus. This pen was made by Tibaldi, the pen-makers in Florence, and sold at a 2010 auction in Shanghai for its record-breaking amount. Soaring above its competition, this black diamond-encrusted pen sold for $8.1 million.

It has 945 black diamonds sparkling along its little body, to be precise, as well as over 100 rubies.

The pen’s dimensions are based on the Golden Number, Phi, known in Renaissance science as the divine proportion due to how often it recurs in nature and even in the human body.

Did you know?

Tibaldi was founded by the craftsman Giuseppe Tibaldi in 1916, which signaled the invention of the first fountain pen in Italy. Due to WWI, the materials and machines needed to create this pen were difficult to come by, making the invention all the more impressive.

Previous

9 Rarest Exterior Paint Colors For Cars in the US

8 Most Expensive Classic Cars Ever Sold

Next

Leave a Comment